Study Group Consultancy:

Styles of Interpretation

Compiled by:  Stan De Loach, Ph.D.

1991

NOTE:  This research work is intended only for non-commercial circulation.

This work is dedicated
to the memory of my departed friend,
Dr. Osvaldo Sánchez Guerrero,
with gratitude
for the beautiful and enduring legacy he left me.


FOREWORD

This volume is offered as a companion volume to my earlier work: Study group consultancy: Elements of the task (1988).  This second work is a collection of more than 550 interpretations illustrating general avenues of approach to verbal interventions in the consulting task in the context of Tavistock group relations conferences.

Study group consultancy: Styles of interpretation is a compilation of published interpretations intended for study by those persons undertaking the consultant role in Tavistock group relations conferences.  The primary purpose of this collection is for research and self-study.  The interpretations included are not offered for verbatim reproduction during conference events.  But they may occasionally serve during a conference to bring lucidity to dynamics, themes, or patterns about which a consultant is unaware or unable to verbalize clearly.  They may also bring to consciousness issues or dynamics that the consultant may maintain outside of awareness.

The interpretations reprinted here represent diverse and creative approaches that consultants have taken to the challenge of elucidating groups’ motives and behaviors in ways that ensure opportunity for learning from experience.  Inasmuch as these interventions are the products of thoughtful effort and experience, they may provide a review of ways of interpreting that others have found advantageous in their own conference work and thought.  Inasmuch as they have been published, they offer concrete points of departure for discussion of the styles and functions of verbal interventions as interpretation in group relations conferences.

This volume may be used for different purposes.  It clarifies the wide range of interpretive styles used by consultants.  It permits comparison of the content, themes, and conscious intentions of interpretations.  It facilitates examination of the physical dimensions (the length, the idiom, the degree of abstraction, the tone, and the formality of language) of different paths to the goal of effective interpretation.

Each group within a Tavistock conference is unique and deserves original analysis and synthesis of its emotional life on the part of its consultant and conference staff.  This compilation, nonetheless, may serve as an initial, incomplete, guide to concerns, dilemmas, and struggles customarily found in the collective and collaborative interpretive work undertaken in such conferences.

Stan De Loach, Ph.D.


Most of the sources cited below are presented in their entirety at  www.continents.com/references.html

Related works


Agazarian  (1980)

The individual’s disturbance "‘is only a symptom of the conflicts and tensions within his group....’"  (p. 187)

"What is (this member) voicing for the group?"  (p. 188)

"The group is stuffing (one member)...full of the feelings it wishes to disown-- what are those feelings and what are they about?"  (p. 188)

The group may use "a scapegoat as a way of separating from the group both the unacceptable feelings and the member who...(is) the container of those feelings."  (p. 188)

"This group is in the process of...arranging for an empty chair so that the feelings about the...(consultant) can be evacuated from the group."  (p. 189)


Agazarian  (1983)

"Under a kind exterior, the group members unconsciously (collude) to deny their sadistic, retaliatory feelings toward the...(consultant) who (has) deprived them of the symbiotic union that they...desired...."  (p. 34)

"There is a smile on the face of the tiger."  ( p. 34)

"What is the group killing with kindness?"  (p. 34)

The group has "suddenly become a dangerous place again, where a member could get ‘lost’ and the impulse (is) for the group to climb back into the...(consultant’s) lap."  (p. 35)

Alderfer  (1970)

Our work here "is based on the assumption that experience precedes intellectual understanding."  (p. 18)

The "profusion of democratic values...(may serve) as a means for avoiding some more difficult issues."  (p. 21)

The "differences among individuals with regard to task or professional competence may be ignored because they tamper with the norm that everyone is equal."  (p. 22)

Alderfer  (1977a)

Perhaps new "groups (have) formed around the special anxieties of... individual members."  (p. 239)

"Significant power differences among groups usually arise from their developmental histories."  (p. 241)

Intergroup "conflict usually is marked by various forms of irrationality.  It is common for groups in conflict to sense this irrationality in others, but it is uncommon for them to see it in themselves."  (p. 243)

The "power of some to command is limited by the willingness of others to obey...."  (p. 253)

Does the de-authorization of the old occur in this group because they shame the young?

Alderfer  (1977b)

The group fears letting conflict that is present here emerge clearly.

Issues "of inclusion and exclusion are especially acute in the formation of any new group."  (p. 198)

At times, it is useful to describe without interpretation.

Almond & Astrachan  (1969)

The members seem to be sobered by "the subjective impact of...(the group)--the power of the group’s consensus, the inevitable complicity of every member in the group’s process, the demands of the group on its members for participation and conformity to group norms."  (p. 288)

Peers "are never actually equals."  (p. 289)

Alonso & Rutan  (1979)

The group seems to want to train women "not to compete, or if they must compete, to be sure not to win."  (p. 484)

"Classical literature is replete with examples of women who, themselves locked into a passive, recessive position, spur their men on to act out for them their aggressive passions."  (p. 485)

 "Creativity and independence are not synonymous with competitiveness...."  (p. 489)

Anthony  (1968)

"War (is) the great harmonizer and integrator; with peace (comes) rivalry, dissension, and disruption."  (p. 279)

Clearly, "diversity, like adversity, has its own rewards, and polytheism has provided as many glorious civilizations as monotheism."  (p. 281)

"What the group does with its aloneness is what matters."  (p. 300)

Applebaum  (1976)

The group provides "opportunities to appreciate existentially data which would otherwise be known only in the abstract...."  (p. 185)

"Independent decision or initiative seems increasingly forbidden."  (p. 188)

"‘How many groups are there now?’"  (p. 189)

"Does anyone besides me feel I am being left out?"  (p. 191)

Argyris  (1962)

The group may "feel responsible to keep poor quality at a particular level (in order) to keep...(the consultant) at work."  (p. 36)

Arlow  (1961b)

What is the content of this silence?   What is its primary function?

Arsenian & Semrad  (1951)

The group’s anxiety may stem from the "absence of any way in which to express one’s love for the group."  (p. 155)

In what impeding ways does the fantasy that only the consultant can understand and formulate group dynamics affect your working on your primary task!

Astrachan  (1970)

The group acts "as if (it) were primarily engaged, not in any form of work, but in attempting to get...(the consultant) to behave in a certain way."  (p. 112)

"In every system, behavior in one part of the system will affect all the other parts of the system."  (p. 115)

Astrachan & Flynn  (1976)

 The "membership (uses) one of (its) members to represent all the chaos."  (p. 53)

The group wants a "consultant not as someone whose purpose is to help them attend to the task of learning, but rather as someone who can provide them with a degree of safety and comfort."  (p. 53)

Perhaps the conflict "among member groups (is developed) in order to avoid any conflict with the staff."  (p. 55)

The group, "faced with new tasks (assumes) that old skills and organizational patterns are relevant."  (p. 58)

"Members may wish to replace, destroy or eagerly accept staff authority, but they never ignore it."  (p. 60)

"The groups behave as though they had no sense of their connectedness, no sense that they all act for each other."  (p. 63)

Astrachan & Redlich  (1969)

"The group persists in calling me a leader.  I am here as your consultant."  (p. 489)

Back  (1973)

The group denies the tragic side of the human situation.

Balint  (1957)

The group finds it easier to tolerate diagnosed pain than undiagnosed pain.

"Only he whose knowledge is patchy and scanty has to use long phrases to describe the little that he knows."  (p. 291)

Banet  (1976)

"The shell that protects also kills."  (p. 284)

Banet & Hayden  (1977)

"Whatever the group is doing or talking about, the group is always talking about itself, reflecting itself."  (p. 157)

Here "it is the freedom that frightens."  (p. 165)

Barrett-Lennard  (1975)

"Change or ‘growth’ associated with...(this) experiential learning context...is often more significant in regard to the doors that are opened than those which are immediately passed through."  (p. 75)

Beck  (1981)

A "scapegoat monitors inclusiveness issues."  (p. 328)

Bennis  (1957)

Is "the veneer of (the) group...threatened by an observer...?" (p. 299)

Bennis & Shepard  (1974)

Evidencing "boredom in this situation is a method of warding off anxiety by denying its proximity...."  (p. 132)

"The...(consultant), not the lack of a goal, is the cause of insecurity."  (p. 133)

"The pretense of a fruitless search for goals is a plea for...(the consultant) to tell the group what to do, by simultaneously demonstrating its helplessness without him and its willingness to work under his direction for...approval and protection."  (p. 13)

The consultant’s "observation is politely ignored, as one would ignore a faux pas at a tea party."  (p. 134)

"Much of the group activity is to be understood as punishment of the (consultant), for his failure to meet needs and expectations, for getting the group into an unpleasant situation, for being the worst kind of authority figure...."  (p. 135)

"There is a secret hope that the chaos in the group is in fact part of the master plan, that...(the consultant) is really leading (the group members) in the direction they should be going.  That he may really be helpless as they imply, or that the failure may be theirs rather than his, are frightening possibilities."  (p. 136)

Group members’ "fighting one another is off-target behavior...."  (p. 137)

"The criterion for evaluating a contribution is no longer who said it, but what is said."  (p. 141)

"All decisions must be unanimous..., since everyone must be happy, but the issues on which decisions are made are mostly ones about which group members have no strong feelings."  (p. 144)

The group expresses its fear that intimacy breeds contempt.

"Sullivan once referred to...the greatest inhibition to the understanding of what is distinctly human as ‘the overwhelming conviction of self-hood--(which) amounts to a delusion of unique individuality.’"  (p. 147)

The group has the opportunity to establish "valid communication."  (p. 152)

Beukenkamp  (1955)

The group "desires to be fed, like the infant who makes but minimum contribution to the process."  (p. 339)

F. Bion  (Ed.)  (1980)

What is implied, even known, but carefully not stated?

One "is under an obligation to remain civilized, but remaining civilized is not the same thing as being unaware of what human character is really like."  (p. 40)

There is "a distinction between ‘good and bad’ and ‘good and evil.’"  (p. 47)

This "horrible occupation of thinking."  (p. 56)

As Shakespeare wrote," conscience makes cowards of us all."  (p. 71)

Dreaming "is, amongst other things, a way of remembering."  (p. 73)

"A final solution appears to be quick; real solutions require time."  (p. 122)

The group sounds like "Satan rebuking sin." (p. 127)

The group acts as if the proper thing to do when a new idea is born is to give it a sharp whack on the rear end.

W. R. Bion  (1957a)

I have "become a kind of group deity;...questions (are) directed to me as one who (knows) the answers without need to resort to work...."  (p. 445)

The group demonstrates "the dread with which a questioning attitude is regarded."  (p. 456)

The group assumes "that if two people come together, they can only do so for sexual purposes."  (p. 466)

Endurance "of this monotony appears to be a lesser evil than action to end it."  (p. 473)

W. R. Bion  (1957b)

Perhaps "it (is) more important to know whether something (is) true than whether it (is) pleasant."  (p. 235)

W. R. Bion  (1961)

"I do not consider that I forced the group to discuss myself, though I do agree that the group was forced to do so."  (p. 31)

"The impression I receive is that very little importance is attached to the view I express as a possible explanation of what is going on.  It seems to me either to be ignored, or to be taken as evidence of a warped outlook in myself."  (p. 33)

"I am certain that the group is quite unable to face the emotional tensions within it without believing that it has some sort of God who is fully responsible for all that takes place."  (p. 38)

"Nor is it obvious why we should require a leader.  The time of meeting of the group has been laid down, and really there seems to be no other decision that the group has to make."  (p. 39)

My "interpretations would seem to be concerned with matters of no importance to anyone but myself."  (p. 40)

"I feel I am being treated like a child who is being patiently dealt with in spite of his tiresomeness."  (p. 46)

"I am expressing my feeling, not of the group’s disharmony, but of its unity."  (p. 52)

"A group structure in which one member is a god, either established or discredited, has a very limited usefulness."  (p. 56)

"I am quite justified in saying that the group feels such and such when, in fact, perhaps only one or two people would seem to provide by their behavior warrant for such a statement, if, at the time of behaving like this, the group show no outward sign of repudiating the lead they are given."  (p. 58)

"I think the group has got together during the last five minutes in order to make anyone uncomfortable who says or does anything to help me give further interpretations."  (p. 60)

Leaders "who neither fight nor run away are not easily understood."  (p. 65)

"The basic assumption in this group culture seems to be that an external object exists whose function it is to provide security for the immature organism."  (p. 74)

The "group (seems) to believe that they can(not) possibly learn anything of value from each other."  (p. 82)

The "matters with which I am concerned continue, and evolve, but they do not ‘begin.’"  (p. 88)

"‘What we learn from history is that we do not learn from history’"  (p. 89)

Few "things in history have aroused a group’s feelings more powerfully than controversy about the characteristics of the deity whose cult is at the time flourishing."  (p. 100)

There "is no way in which the individual can, in a group, ‘do nothing’--not even by doing nothing."  (p. 118)

My "assumed pre-eminence in experience of groups is itself a matter for scrutiny."  (p. 120)

"I do not nourish and sustain the group so they nourish and sustain me."  (p. 120)

W. R. Bion  (1967)

The main "point of importance in...(this group) is the unknown.  Nothing must be allowed to distract from intuiting that."  (p. 272)

"Do not remember past sessions."  (p. 272)

"‘Progress’ (is) measured by the increased number and variety of moods, ideas and attitudes seen in any given session."  (p. 273)

The group may work to extend understanding in the domain of sense, the domain of myth, or the domain of passion.

The group "always knows more than the (consultant) though it cannot bear to be aware of (this) knowledge."  (p. 278)

Perhaps "‘memory’ is the past tense of ‘desire.’"  (p. 279)

W. R. Bion  (1970)

"Development itself is not an object that can be desired.’"  (p. 79)

And "what of more primitive uses of the tongue?"  (p. 82)

W. R. Bion  (1978)

Perhaps the group intuits why Camus called freedom such as you have here "dreadful": each person must now assume responsibility for all his or her "actions with no appeal to a supreme authority."  (p. 3)

The "fact that one lives to adulthood means that one must have done all sorts of things which would meet with disapproval if people knew about them--one is vulnerable."  (p. 8)

The "‘answer lies in the group.’"  (p. 22)

"There is always a craving to slap in an answer so as to prevent any spread of the flood through the gap which exists.  Experience brings it home to you that you can give what we call ‘answers’ but they are really space stoppers.  It is a way of putting an end to curiosity--especially if you can succeed in believing the answer is the answer."  (p. 22)

"Any statement is valid as far as I am concerned if it is a prelude to the exercise of disciplined curiosity."  (p. 23)

"Curiosity is so often linked with danger."  (p. 33)

The group has "so little experience of real relief that...(it is) only too thankful to get anything at all and to call it a day--and to play on the fact that so is (the consultant)."  ( p. 36)

It "is so difficult to tolerate being ignorant, and so much easier to scrape up an answer which is a more or less rational explanation of our behaviour...."  (p. 40)

The "search for truth can be limited both by our lack of intelligence or wisdom, and by our emotional inheritance.  The fear of knowing the truth can be so powerful that the doses of truth are lethal."  (p. 43)

W. R. Bion  (1979)

Is "what appears to ‘us’ to be regarded as identical with fact?...I regard any thing I ‘know’ as transitive theory--a theory ‘on the way’ to knowledge, but not knowledge.  It is merely a ‘resting place,’ a ‘pause’ where I can be temporarily free to be aware of my condition, however precarious that condition is."  (p. 31)

"What you don’t know is knowledge; once you know it, and once it is known by you, you are too full of knowledge to be able to be curious."  (p. 36)

"Socrates pointed out that ‘talk,’ like ‘painting,’ is not good, not bad, but ambiguous."  (p. 46)

"Speech is ambiguous; its ambiguity is the more dangerous for being disguised by its apparent precision."  (p. 50)

Unless "the human animal learns to become expert in discrimination he will be in imminent danger of the wrong choice."  (p. 138)

W. R. Bion  (1982)

"I never thought that religion had any other function than the regulation of my and other people’s sexual activities."  (p. 91)

"No protection more solid than a figment of the imagination."  (p. 130)

Borriello  (1976b)

"The group seems to subscribe to the myth that...."  (p. 150)

"The group seems to want to disregard what is happening and instead cling to its illusion that...."  (p. 150)

"The group acts as if all its members are innocent bystanders to what is happening."  (p. 150)

"The group self-righteously condemns...(one member) for that which exists in all."  (p. 150)

The group renders unto Caesar what it believes to be Caesar’s.

"All the group members today praise...(the consultant) in order to avoid their rage feelings toward him...because they feel that if they were to express such feelings some dire consequence would result...."  (p. 157)

"The men always seem to agree today with...(the consultant) in order to avoid their competitive feelings toward him for the women in the group...because they fear that if they were to express such feelings...(the consultant) would retaliate in some way...."  (p. 157)

There "is no such thing as a leaderless group...."  (p. 161)

There "are no innocent bystanders--there is no such thing as nonparticipation...."  (p. 161)

Bradford  (1980)

We "can intuit long before we can cognitively understand."  (p. 101)

"To find that one’s self is not an enemy but an ally, not a burden but a resource, is a powerful discovery."  (p. 102)

The pitfall "is in making the erroneous leap from ‘trust yourself’ to ‘trust yourself at all times on all things.’"  (pp. 106-107)

The group needs "to learn how to manage the dynamic tension that is constantly occurring between the needs of the individuals and the requirements of the group."  (p. 111)

The journey is easily confused with the destination.

To "be able to give up what has paid off in the past and move into a new and uncharted territory is difficult."  (p. 119)

Broadbent  (1979)

As "the artist stands to life so the interpretation stands to the group."  (p. 193)

Meaning "is already latent among people, and may merely be brought out, made manifest, by the flow of the telling, the interpreting; yet all the interpreter’s glow can do is reveal the meaning as hazy: and what he says may be moonshine."  (p. 199)


Cartwright  (1969)

The "official leader and the actual leader of a group are often not the same individual."  (p. 703)

Cartwright & Lippitt  (1969)

The group may find it useful to distinguish "between conformity and uniformity."  (p. 272)

"Because each group is made up of members who are loyal members of other groups and who have unique individual interests, each group must continually cope with deviancy tendencies of the members."  (p. 276)

Cartwright & Zander  (1953)

The group may examine "the desirability of formal arrangements which maintain the responsibilities of leadership in the same person regardless of the changing tasks of the group."   (p. 537)

"Leadership is viewed as the performance of those acts which help the group achieve its objectives."  (p. 538)

The "problems of leadership cannot be safely separated from problems of membership."  (p. 550)

Cohn  (1972)

The group is engaged in "the search for functional vs. irrational authority."  (p. 871)

"Unspoken words about feelings usually serve as hydraulic brakes in the group process."  (p. 873)

Cooley  (1926)

"All groups have a body of beliefs which are taken for granted merely because no one disputes them, and which often turn out to be illusions....  No group is a trustworthy critic of its own conclusions...."  (p. 62)

"If the distinctive trait of spatial knowledge is that it is mensurative, that of social knowledge is, perhaps, that it is dramatic."  (p. 64)

Certainly "objectivity is not absolute."  (p. 67)

Maybe "one’s subjectivity needs to be understood, if only to avoid it."  (p. 69)

The "difficulty of accumulating knowledge, so far as primary facts are concerned, is quite imaginary.  Dispute, as in other fields, is mainly about interpretation."  (p. 73)

Cooper  (1974)

The "dependency issues, whatever real component they might have, serve to mask and/or make ineffective the individual’s capacity for initiative within himself, the individual group members taking responsibility for the events in the group, and the difficulty members have in turning to each other to share information and skills."  (p. 248)

Cooper & Gustafson  (1979a)

Issues "of collaboration and cooperation are central in the group-(consultant) relationship."  (p. 694)

Does the group perhaps feel some "discomfort with being skillful, (fear) of the possible impact of taking roles felt to be too powerful, and concern of putting down the consultant"?  (p. 700)

Cooper & Gustafson  (1979b)

The dilemma is "how to feel qualified without disqualifying others."  (p. 977)

Cooper & Lofgren  (1972)

"‘The men in the group are relating to each other in a boastful, bragging way and the women members seem to attempt to stimulate this process.’"  (p. 9)


Coplin  (l964)

Always "ask what a group is ‘doing’ when it is not ‘working.’"  (p. 11)

Cytrynbaum, Lee & Wadner  (1981)

The group seems to engage in a "process of exaltation and idealization of women as ways of defensively masking underlying contempt for them."  (p. 2)

These "intense feelings of envy, fear, rage, and shame" may be "associated with residual and unconscious feelings of helplessness associated with the dependent position in relation to an all-powerful maternal figure."  (p. 3)

The female’s "authority is devalued so as to reduce the envy and fear."  (p. 3)

Could it be that the "men feel compelled to challenge female authority as a way of resisting a regressive pull toward overwhelming feelings of dependency"?  (p. 4)

Women "should be powerless, nurturant, and submissive as a defense against the frightening fantasy that women are ‘potentially more powerful and dangerous than men.’"  (p. 4)

Perhaps "the gender of an authority figure is perceived as a more potent variable than is skill or competence at task performance."   If so, this may be so because of the group’s "inability to integrate ‘femaleness’ with exercise of authority, power, and competence."  (p. 5)

The group seems held back by concerns about "feelings of confusion over conflicting loyalties to men vs. women."  (p. 9)

Day  (1967)

"Every family plays the game of seeing whom the child resembles at a time when anger toward the (newborn) intruder must be kept in abeyance."  (p. 438)

Perhaps an early "unconscious fantasy shared by the members is that to become a group is to become victims of the...(consultant)."  (p. 441)


Dentler & Erikson  (1959)

"The displacement of hostilities on a scapegoat at the bottom of the status structure is one mechanism, apparently, by which the ambivalent attitudes toward the...‘top man’ (or consultant)...can be diverted and drained off."  (p. 100)

Dolgoff  (1973)

"Communication is the penetration of boundaries."  (p. 241)

"We see things not as they are but as we are."  (p. 243)

A "heart transplant (may be) rejected by the body which cannot survive without it."  (p. 243)

"Rational" has been defined as "‘devoid of all delusions save those of observation, experience, and reflection.’"  (p. 250)

It "is easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than to think your way into a new way of acting."  (p. 251)

It "is the ‘normal’ and ‘mentally healthy’ among us rather than the world’s neurotics and psychotics who wage war, pollute our air and water, destroy wild life, and discriminate against minorities."  (pp. 251-252)

"‘Structure sets limits and the idea that liberty means freedom from limitations rather than the freedom to choose one’s limitations is a particularly dangerous delusion for the overcrowded inhabitants of a small planet.’"  (pp. 252-253)


Du Bois  (1967)

It is possible that these "interpersonal conflicts...(are) symptomatic of basic structural problems in the organization" of this group.  (p. 266)

Duhl  (1969)

It is clear that information "which threatens the sense of belonging, participation, or competence will be tenaciously avoided" while that "which enhances them has a good chance for acceptance."  (p. 401)

A "new task may produce a period of crisis...."  (p. 407)

Dunphy  (1968)

There are issues that are being avoided in this discussion, and there are reasons for your avoiding them.

Action is "seen as taking place in a field external to the individual."  (p. 209)

"The scapegoating of this member represents, at an individual level, a way of handling fears about insufficiency, and, at the group level, a short-term way of uniting the majority of group members into a cohesive group.  It is as if members were denying their own weakness by projecting it onto the scapegoat and, by implication, onto the...(consultant) whom the scapegoat represents."   (p. 217)

Edelson  (1975)

Study group experiences confirm "the importance of a view of man as animal symbolicum...."  (p. xi)

"Science is maintained by the discipline of apprenticeship."   (p. xiii)

A "movement away from phenomena to a discernment of the abstract structures underlying such phenomena is the way to understanding in science."  (pp. xiii-xiv)

"‘One difficulty in the psychological sciences lies in the familiarity of the phenomena with which they deal.’"  (p. 3)

The group operates under a great deficit if it employs the "unquestioned assumption that the properties and content of the mind are accessible to introspection...."  (p. 3)

"The (consultant)...makes a difference because he listens, and in his interpretations accepts and bears witness to the presence of: meaning in what for the (group members)...is meaningless or unspeakable; different meanings in what for the (group members)...is unequivocal and unambiguous; and different kinds of meanings in what the (group members have)...intended as a representation of one kind of meaning."  (p. 19)

"What can be recognized as deviant, when no norm has been established?"  (p. 6)

The group may "distinguish ‘interpretation’ and ‘explanation’ as two alternate, sometimes complementary, ways to understand reality."  (p. 31)

Perhaps the group has trouble understanding or making "‘sense of this event, because it is not a permissible event.  It is not allowed.  It is not acceptable.’"  (p. 33)

Nothing "‘but a wish can set our mental apparatus at work.’"  (p. 46)

Working in a study group might "be termed a systematic study of self-deception and its motivations."  (p. 48)

Efforts to understand the verbal and nonverbal interchanges in a study group are "essentially an inquiry into the grounds rather than the causes of acts."  (p. 52)

"The necessity for interpretation is raised by a change, a departure from a norm, a break in a pattern."  (p. 57)

An "act of interpretation is instigated--against a normative background--by deviance."  (p. 58)

I am unclear whether the group’s metaphor "is primarily a thing or an act."  (p. 116)

"Accuracy of observation is the equivalent of accuracy of thinking."  (p. 138)

The consultant’s "act of interpretation arises from a subtle interaction between anticipations and retrospections."  (p. 139)

Eissler  (1953)

The group "prefers to produce adjusted behavior instead of a structural change."  (p. 126)

Ezriel  (1950a)

The group attempts to drive a wedge between the two consultants; it "feels a need to split a loving couple because seeing them united sets up feelings of jealousy...and impulses to destructive actions with disastrous consequences."  (p. 61)

Group members apparently desire "the presence of...a person who would take responsibility for (whatever) happened, since they (fear)...that without such a safeguard the free expression of their (feelings)...might lead to dangerous quarrels in the group....  (The group resents) my not playing the part of this controlling figure." (p. 65)

Flapan & Fenchel  (1984)

"‘There is no inherent value in psychic pain.’"  (p. 19)

"‘I am feeling impotent and wonder if you might be trying to make me feel that way.  What is gained by your exclusion of me?’"  (p. 26)

Foulkes  (1957)

"It is the process of communication rather than the information it conveys which is important to us."  (p. 44)

Freedman  (1980)

"‘The mother of our nurturance is also the mother of our frustration.’"  (p. 238)

"‘We all divide the world into two halves.  We all draw the line at a different point.  We all call the division by the same name, me and not me.’"  (p. 257)

Freeman  (1972-1973)

"Women have been punished for being competent throughout most of human history."  (p. 164)

Fried  (1965)

"Withdrawal is not only a self-protective but a punitive measure."  (p. 54)

Ganzarain  (1977)

"‘The part of the human environment that is most significant is the society of (one’s)...fellow beings.’"  (p. 443)

Gibbard  (1972)

The group is content with the "fantasy of unanimity rather than an actual consensus."  (p. 8)

"Much of the difficulty which group members experience as they struggle to maintain the work group stems from their discomfort with and their desire to deny" individual ambivalence toward the group.  (p. 36)

A "major function of the preoccupation with the (consultant)...is to ward off envelopment by the group-as-a-whole...."  (p. 58)

Gibbard & Hartman  (1973)

"The essence of the utopian fantasy is that the good can be split off from the bad and that this separation can be maintained."  (p. 126)

The "utopian group is one in which sexual attraction and sexual competition cannot be comfortably included."  (p. 132)

"One key motive for the ‘revolt’ is to gain possession of the ‘goodness’ which the members believe to be inherent in the group."  (p. 133)

The group focuses on "‘the distribution of power in the group....’"  (p. 136)

The group focuses now on "‘the distribution of affection in the group....’"  (p. 136)

"The group is intolerant of any internal conflict, especially of persistent evidence of suppressed hostility, and thus the solidarity and harmony become increasingly illusory."  (p. 136)

A "major function of the members’ focusing on the (consultant)...is to ward off envelopment by the group-as-mother."  (p. 139)

Gibbard, Hartman & Mann  (1974b)

"Black males in society...often come to be viewed (and allow themselves to be viewed) as the repository of the sexual and aggressive impulses of the collectivity."  (p. 191)

Gosling, Miller, Turquet & Woodhouse  (1964)

Ask "what a group is ‘doing’ when it is not ‘working’!"  (p. 11)

"‘There is nothing so practical as a good theory.’"  (p. 119)

"‘Oh, what a dusty answer gets the soul
When hot for certainties in this our life.’"  (p. 120)

"‘Il n’y a que des défaites triomphantes.’"  (p. 143)

Gosling & Turquet  (1964)

"The only decisions for which the (study group)...is in fact responsible have to do with its own survival and the promotion of a fruitful discussion based on curiosity...."  (p. 22)

"Our motto is: ‘All ye who enter here take up your burdens.’"  (p. 29)

There "is sometimes a place for acknowledging a situation in the ‘here and now’ without either interpreting it or trying to manipulate it."  (p. 44)

"Man is a political animal and no one may disregard this except at his peril."  (p. 61)

"There is no learning from experience without pain."  (p. 62)

The group secretly hopes "that ‘the parents’ will not get together to compare notes: but we have no evidence that there is any advantage in indulging this phantasy."  (p. 68)

The group has come up against "the necessity of finding language which is suited to the (occasion)...."  (p. 73)

Gosling  ( 1979)

If group members allow themselves "to have sexual awareness and feeling about each other (they)...might find (themselves)...in positions of rivalry with each other with consequent feelings of jealousy and fear...."  (p. 85)

What "an effective defence ‘not knowing’ (can)...be...."  (p. 85)

Greenacre  (1954)

Rules "are the implementation of principles; i.e., the forms of their specific application, and no rule is very significant except as it represents the general practice of a desirable principle."  What are the group’s principles here?   (p. 676)

Greenson  (1974)

By "interpreting one shows that one is not afraid."  (p. 42)

The group is trying to push its confusion into me and is furious with me because I cannot contain it.

Grotjahn  (1950)

"‘I feel as much observed as I am observing.’"  (p. 65)

Grotstein  ( 1981b)

"‘Do we know to whom we should be grateful for the knowledge we have acquired?’"  (p. 5)

Guereca  (1979)

"The members’ subgroups (may)...reflect some aspect of the members’ perception of the staff."  (p. 104)

"Authority is a fact of institutional life and those who exercise it must judge the extent to which they will be permitted to do so by those who are subject to it."  (p. 108)

Gustafson  (1976b)

The pseudomutual group "is the result of systematic...effort to blur distinctions and boundaries, which is felt to be necessary because these allow clear disagreement and disagreement is felt to be catastrophic."  (p. 990)

The group knows very little about the outside world; moreover, it is not clear that the group members are interested in it.

Is it a sin to put individual learning ahead of group membership?

The concern bubbling beneath these deliberations is "whether clear individual expression will be tolerated in the group, or whether it is necessary to leave for that to be experienced?"  (p. 997)

"Is it necessary to have pure loyalty at home and free expression sent abroad?" ( p. 997)

Gustafson  (1978)

To "allow anyone to exercise authority on behalf of the task of the group...is experienced as the reemergence of tyranny."  (p. 142)

"The authority to lead the whole group is given by its primary task."  (p. 152)

Gustafson & Cooper  (1978a)

"Sartre...argues that (felt) scarcity is the fundamental disturbance in group life: scarcity of attention, honor, love, or whatever is wanted."  (p. 160)

Gustafson & Cooper  (1978b)

The membership is attempting to see how the staff handles "being alternatively deified and emptied, raised up and dropped...a problem they (have)...obviously been subjected to in the conference by others, and outside the conference in their roles of leadership."  (p. 857)

The group seems "to be having trouble separating the consultant as an object to be used, from his person...as if doing all they did to the object (lifting up and dropping) also did it to the person...as if he could not tell the difference between being used by others in his role, and his private self."  (p. 857)

Can group members "learn to manage being used in their social roles?"  (p. 857)

"What would happen to (the consultant)...if (the group members)...became capable?"  (p. 857)

Gustafson & Cooper  (1979)

The "healthiness of a society depends on the richness of voluntary associations, in which persons are both individuals and members with shared goals.  The fostering of these kinds of networks depends on...political forces, as well as a tradition which grasps their importance."   (p. 1045)

Gustafson & Cooper  (1985)

"‘I feel tempted to take over, but I can see that it won’t do you any good.  It isn’t clear what you want this group to be about.’"  (p. 167)

Gustafson, Cooper, Lathrop, Ringler, Seldin & Wright  (1981a)

The data suggest that "the difficult and neglected problems of small groups are about divergent interests."  (p. 321)

Hartman & Gibbard  (l973)

Perhaps the group entertains "an unconscious fantasy that (the consultant has)...given birth to the group and could also kill it."  (p. 309)


Hartman & Gibbard  (1976a)

The group "is attempting to deal with the relation between the individual and the group (at a time)...when individuals find it difficult to differentiate between the two."   (p. 158)

The group’s apparent feeling of guilt may derive from its "perception of itself as having excluded and hurt (the consultant)...during the revolt."   (p. 168)

"Not only are there not enough women, power, territory to go around, but...the convenience of scapegoats provides an outgroup upon which to externalize sexual anxieties, unattractiveness, powerlessness, and the like."   (p. 173)

Hartman & Gibbard  (1976b)

"All groups are held together by irrational mechanisms of faith and belief, as well as by real capacity of the group to provide for its members."   (p. 335)

Heimann  (1952)

"Frustration and gratification can be defined in terms of separation and union."   (p. 142)

"Serenity, the prerogative of the old and wise, often goes together with a halt in progression."  (p. 162)

Hendrick  (1943)

"‘I tried to draw a camel,
But it looked more like a horse.
So is that what I want and said it was?
Why sure I did, of course!’"  (p. 318)

Herbert & Trist  (1953)

The "responsibility for the failure of the discussion so far (is)...to be considered the group’s)...rather than mine, for the way (the group has)...been keeping on a superficial level (constitutes)...an attempt to prove my methods ineffective; (the group has)...been withholding authentic contributions which they might have made to the task of the group and concentrating their efforts on their emotional struggle with me--to make me do what they wanted; rather than allow me to do what I (want)...they (are rendering)...me useless.  When I...refused the authoritarian pattern which (the group’s)...wish to be dependent would have imposed on me (the group took)...refuge in inertia, which was a flight from the task.  Passive non-cooperation of this kind was also an attack on me, and, not unnaturally, (the group members)... feared that I might retaliate."  (pp. 223-224)

By choosing to be present, the silent members help "perpetuate the life of the group.  Their passive attitude (puts)...them in the position of an audience and the future of the group (depends)...on their being persuaded by the speaking members to continue to attend."   (p. 230)

Higgin & Bridger  (1964)

Perhaps "the members (have).. . found that as a group they (are)...defective and (have)...decided to withdraw into themselves as individuals."  (p. 427)

Is a leaderless group the most effective form of organization for this exercise?

By "making the leader of the minority opinion one of (the group’s)...external envoys, the group not only (gets)...rid of him from the group but (makes)...it very difficult for him to express his minority views."  (p. 434)

Hopper & Weyman  (1975)

"Differentiation need not always involve stratification."   (p. 167)

Horkheimer  (1972)

"How much blood and cruelty is the foundation of all ‘good things.’"  (p. 57)

Horwitz  (1983)

There are "roles to be filled in a group and...the group in its wisdom selects or drafts its most likely candidate to fulfill a particular function."   (p. 270)

Jaffe  (1973)

"One has to move out and form a community that deals consistently with the dominant culture; one must learn to stay high while in contact with those who do not share one’s values."   (p. 204)

"The issues of power, group responsibility, division of labor, definition of service and competence, and personal responsibilities are germane to any organization."   (p. 209)

Order "and structure are not necessarily synonymous with helpfulness and learning."   (p. 210)

Jaques  (1974a)

A "vote would settle very little, since if there was even a small minority against (the issue)...this would negate the possibility of really effective collaboration."  (p. 543)

"The acceptability of interpretations depends not only on their accuracy, but on the acceptability of the person who offers them."  (p. 549)

Jaques  (1976)

The "unconscious or implicit functions of an institution are specifically determined by the particular individuals associated in the institution, occupying roles within a structure and operating the culture."  (p. 279)

Kanter, Burack, Castagnola, Gilbert, Den Hartog, Hughes & Kruger  (1964)

The talk is "full of discrimination against but little discrimination between."  (p. 160)

Kaplan  (1967)

"Underlying ambivalence toward (the consultant is)...dissipated in bickerings among the members."  (p. 476)

"An absence (on the part of group members)...could be motivated to devalue the (consultant’s) efforts or status."  (p. 481)

The "power theme (appears)...to express the view that one...attains knowledge by aligning oneself with, or perhaps controlling, a powerful central figure who can dispense the required knowledge....  Either one achieves this by a direct alliance with the (consultant)...or with an equally powerful contending subgroup leader."  (p. 487)

The group acts on "the assumption that one acquires knowledge...through a close intimate relationship with another person."  (p. 489)

The group members attempt to resist learning because it seems to them "‘to be submission to the (consultant)....’"  (p. 500)

Kelman  (1963)

"Overcompliance, as a matter of fact, may represent a form of hostility."  (p. 408)

It may prove to be foolhardy "to buy order at the price of oversimplification."  (p. 441)

Conflicts "between members are to be regarded not as fights that must end in victory for one protagonist and defeat for the other but as occasions for learning."  (p. 442)

All and "any conflict is the concern of the entire group."  (p. 442)

Kernberg  (1984)

The group system acts "to destroy any external reality that interferes with...group illusion."   (p. 15)

Kipnis  (1984, December)

Groups "who are unwilling or unable to use power condemn themselves to lives of frustration."  (p. 30)

Kissen  (1976b)

The members of the group are "subtly feeding fuel into a neutral ongoing discussion, attempting to keep it from dwindling, and thereby avoiding a confrontation with their feelings."  (p. 56)

"The craving is clearly for a strong authority figure--not unlike Freud’s...description of the primal horde leader--who will somehow cut the group’s anxiety via masterful clarificatory activity."  (p. 58)

The evident conflict is "between the need for belongingness and inclusion in the incipient group formation process and the fear that the group suction process will somehow lead to a loss of individuality and sense of dignity."   (p. 58)


Klein & Astrachan  (1971)

The "power of leaders is magnified by followers in order to avoid member-member competition."  (p. 675)

Klein & Gould  (1973)

The "group members (act)...as apostles of the consultants."  (p. 209)

Klein  (1930)

I find myself asking whether the group’s feelings of dependence on the consultant give rise to anxiety or whether "simultaneously with the appearance of anxiety there (has)...emerged a sense of dependence."  (p. 31)

Klein  (1985)

Angry, "destructive impulses towards anybody are always bound to give rise to the feeling that that person will also become hostile and retaliatory."   (p. 3)

"It is inherent in the feeling of envy not only that possession is desired, but that there is also a strong urge to spoil other people’s enjoyment of the coveted object-- an urge which tends to spoil the object itself."  (p. 10)

Kohler, Miller, & Klein  (1973)

A study group offers its members opportunities "to compare fantasied and actual authority."  (p. 295)

Krantz  (1987)

When "dependency is being mobilised, irrationality is rarely far away."  (p. 76)

"‘Human realities which are resolutely ignored tend...to return in bizarre and fanatical forms.’"  (p. 80)

The group treats dependence "as if it were better avoided."  (p. 82)

Responsible "behaviour means taking into account the whole range of ourselves--not just the sophisticated and rational, but also the irrational."  (p. 90)

The group experiences heightened anxiety as it comes to see that with respect to these complex issues of authority, leadership, responsibility, and accountability, the group’s charge is less to study "them" and more to study "them in us."  (p. 128)


Kris  (1956b)

Sarcasm?  The "Greek root of the word means tearing apart with one’s teeth."  (p. 62)

Lakin & Constanzo  (1975)

"Paradoxically, group membership threatens one’s autonomy at the same time that it seems to offer security of a kind."  (p. 209)

One "becomes an effective par of (a)...social organization through helping to build it."  (p. 210)

"How various kinds of norms come to be important for the group and their relative compellingness for individuals is the...learning issue here."  (p. 211)

"To discover how this consensus is achieved, and with what consequences for each participant, is the learning objective."  (p. 211)

Leadership "and influence positions rarely remain static...because any member can legitimately try exercising power and influence."  (p. 212)

Although the achievement of consensus "feels satisfying, there is the risk that it may come about at the cost of denying real differences in order to achieve it."  (p. 213)

"Dependency frustrated does not lead to dependency eliminated, but rather to resentment."  (p. 215)

"The popular assumption is misleading, but it is popular."  (p. 218)

"Some desperately want to believe that the group is trustworthy even in the absence of facts that would validate this belief."  (p. 219)

"How do you know?  What’s your basis in the facts of this group’s life and in your own interactions here for (this)...assumption?"  (p. 220)

"Because one’s participation has been largely impulsive, one is ashamed as if one were a small child being ‘caught in the act.’"  (p. 221)

Do you allow yourselves to imagine that the "more effective member behaviour, the less active the (consultant)...."?  (p. 224)

Perhaps this pain is not gratuitous; perhaps the learning is worth the discomfort.

Lawrence & Barham  (1974)

Maybe "it is not so much the insights about authority which are important...but rather the method of examining experience to gain insight."  (p. 96)

Lawrence  (1979)

It "is just not a matter of perceiving but also of personally inquiring into how one arrived at a particular perception."  (p. 5)

The members have the authority "to realize their interpretations of the situation (and)...to exercise their authority to test realities."  (p. 6)

Individual are forced "to consider what is relevant in taking up the role of member as opposed to merely attending the conference."  (p. 13)


Lawrence  (1979a)

Objectivity "is essentially the clarification of one’s own subjectivity."  (p. 235)

Disorder "is not to be kept at bay but entertained, understood, and worked with as a route to new forms of being which would include the political relatedness of the individual to (the group)...."  (p. 240)

"The individual who explores his own subjective experiences runs the risk of being converted into the ‘mad person,’ and then the remainder can hold the picture of being ‘civilized’ and ‘contented.’"  (p. 242)

"Having more, wanting more, and envy of those who have more, have replaced values about being."  (p. 246)

"In a mass society the freedom to experience anxiety is removed by the conventional belief that anxiety equal sickness and is to be wished away by means of tranquilizers."  (p. 248)

"Social hope beings with men and women questioning cultural assumptions and taking authority for interpreting them, no matter where that search for truth leads."  (p. 249)

Lawrence  (1982)

Politics "‘is about disagreement or conflict; and political activity is that which is intended to bring about or resist change, in face of possible resistance....  Conflict lies at the heart of politics.’"  (p. 2)

Relations "‘between two systems are political when one system is consciously or unconsciously attempting, or is perceived as attempting, to impose its goals and values on another.’"   (p. 2)

"(G)ood objects are remembered and bad ones only hidden in the unconscious."   (p. 6)

"Responsibility cannot be delegated...."  (p. 10)

The "acquisition of competence can be seen as one way (members defend)...against the control exercised...by management." (p. 16)

The group’s affect reflects "a strong sense that life (has)...been predetermined."  (p. 17)

"The notion of ‘acting-back’ on this environment appears to be far from people’s minds."   (p. 22)

The "aggressive instinct seems never to be satisfied with entirely impersonal objectives."  (p. 26)

The group is struggling to reconcile "the inner world of phantasy and the outer world of other people."  (p. 29)

"Greater assurance about mastery of anxiety is gained by effective collaboration with other members of the organization in taking organizational action about the organizational problems which incorporate the personal problems."  (p. 31)

"‘Solidarity...means that one wants to please one’s peers, not one’s bosses.  This is not only easier, but also more fun.  Tea breaks and chats in the yard and dart games in the pub make life pleasant; the fact that nobody will do anyone else’s job gives everybody security; people’s aspirations do not take them out of their group, but concern the group as such.’"  (p. 34)

Lawrence  (1985)

"‘To define is to kill
To suggest is to create.’"  (p. 310)

The intergroup and institutional events provide "an opportunity for members and staff to re-affirm their capacities to inspect and question the social contexts in which they are existing."  (p. 313)

In our work together, I shall use "the concept of primary task (as)...a heuristic device and not a prescriptive one, though it can be reduced to that...."  (p. 313)

The "staff both in their managerial and consultant roles are working to enable the membership to find their authority."  (p. 315)

"(A)ny voice echoes a past of other voices."  (p. 320)

By "naming what is believed to be the experience, the possibility of knowing what the experience might be in itself is lost."  (p. 320)

The "‘logical method...is useless for exploration....  ‘Proof’ of sanity is available only to those discharged from mental institutions.’"  (p. 323)

The conference offers "one of the few locations in time and space where individuals have a chance to reflect on the connections between private troubles and public issues...."  (p. 328)

"‘Every (boundary)..is a beginning as well as an ending.’"  (p. 328)

Lear  (1980)

"Structure has to be missed for some time to be believed important."  (p. 291)

"I could draw attention to the tension existing at the boundary between the (conference)...and the host organization."  (p. 292)

"The S. 0. S. from this large group (is)...‘Seek Out Structure’ or we are lost."  (p. 294)

Lederer (1968)

Clearly "some occupations, some mannerisms and some clothing are considered proper for one sex and not for the other, and while a woman aspiring to that which is regarded as mannish may arouse resentment, a man engaging in what is thought to be womanish incurs ridicule and contempt--thin veils for the fear aroused by a broken tabu."  (pp. 36-37)

"Well, yes, we must face it: the little woman--or, more specifically, her body--has, throughout history though to varying degrees, been considered dirty, diseased, putrid--the more so, perhaps, as she is actually desirable."  (p. 37)

Where "nothing is life-like, nothing speaks of death."  (p. 42)

Long ago, "as sometimes since--loving a queen was a heroic way to a short life."  (p. 60)

"Things get less romantic when the victims of women are not men, but children."  (p. 60)

"Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned...."  (p. 76)

"Territoriality precedes morality...."  (p. 88)

"‘The closest agreement (men)...have with (women)...is still tumultuous and stormy.’"  (p. 91)

"‘One hesitates to say it out loud, but still one cannot resist the thought that the level of normal morality is different for women.’"  (p. 93)

The group is "mostly not talking of women at all, but rather of that which men typically find to be typical of women."  (p. 98)

Secular "prostitution has its beginnings in ritual prostitution, which in turn is a priestly function; prostitution grew out of priesthood; and so the latter--not the former--is woman’s oldest profession."  (p. 148)

"The cult of sexual immortality worships woman. The cult of individual immortality, wherever it is found, despises woman."  (p. 168)

The "coronation of a Pope contains a check-up which must result in the verdict Habet--‘he has it.’"  (p. 170)

The "female genital is the ‘place where we have (all) once been.’"  (p. 230)

"‘Emptiness is the female form of perdition.’"  (p. 237)

"So recent, indeed, is man’s self-respect as man, that we are hard put to...find a hero who, having managed to avoid becoming woman’s little pet and victim, yet does not become her tyrant and contemptuous bully."  (p. 239)

"‘A book--there a man gives birth to what a woman begat.’"  (p. 243)

"‘A passion for something does not derive from its goodness or its pure beauty, but above all from its corruption.’"  (p. 254)

"One is a woman, one learns to be a man."  (p. 270)

"Correspondingly, matricide is more frequent than parricide."  (p. 273)

The group’s advance is stalled because the group acts as if it were "allergic to sentiment."  (p. 278)

"‘You are not truly considerate of...(the consultant), you are afraid of (the consultant)....’"  (p. 283)

"Each social system, in its own way, (tries)...to limit (woman’s)...magic."  (p. 284)

Lerner  (1966)

"There is an important distinction between thoughts and ideas.  Men possess thoughts but ideas possess men."  (p. 116)

"Ideas have not only origins and internal consistency; they have also direction and consequence."  (p. 119)

"Ideas do not exist in the void, separated from the purposes and survival of the culture.  In every culture, they are weapons."  (p. 120)

"There can be no ruling caste that is not subject to the same irrationalism as the people ruled."  (p. 121)

Levin & Kanter  (1964)

I do "not understand for the moment the significance of what is being communicated...."  (p. 326)

Levine  (1971)

Conflict "itself is an agreement of sorts, an emotional agreement to act in conflicting ways."  (p. 85)

Levinson (1959)

The group members are giving "conceptual recognition to the possibility that social prescription and individual adaptation may not match."  (p. 173)

Visiting representatives from other groups "may learn from the official charter and the administrative authorities how (this)...organization is supposed to work (but they may not observe)...that it in fact operates in this way."  (p. 177)

A person’s "way of relating to authorities in the organization depends in part upon his relation to authority in general, and upon his fantasies, conscious as well as unconscious, about...‘good’ and... ‘bad’ (authority figures)...."  (p. 178)


Loewenstein  (1956)

"The communication of guilty acts or thoughts, confession, has a real psychological effect.  It frequently makes an accomplice of the listener, thus determining his future behaviour in an important way."  (p. 462)

"It is true that ‘unspoken words are our slaves, and spoken ones enslave us.’"  (p. 463)

The group seems overcome by "a fear that the affect might...reach too much intensity and also have an effect on the (consultant)...."  (p. 464)


Low & Bridger  (1979)

The group wishes to deny the fact that "it is possible for individuals, and the group as a whole, to deal simultaneously with matters of content (and so carry out a task) and with matters of process (and so become aware of internal dynamics)."  (p. 85)

I think that "what remains unexpressed, even hidden, can be vital for the elucidation of why certain actions take place."  (p. 86)

MacKenzie  (1981)

Group "members are not simply results of their contexts but actively participate in the development of their own contexts."  (p. 113)

"‘The search for patterns is the basis of all scientific investigation. Where there is pattern, there is significance.’"  (p. 116)

A scapegoat is "frequently the object of attack, but in the process he becomes the vehicle by which the group clarifies and resolves differences within its ranks."  (p. 122)

Main  (1957)

"In a human relationship the study of one person, no matter which one, is likely to throw light on the behaviour of the other."  (p. 131)

Why be blind "to the fact that needing is an early form of love"?  (p. 143)

Main  (1975)

The group wishes the consultant to "occupy the role of super-ego for members of the group, who are then freed not only of responsibility for decisions but also of burdens of self-criticism and doubt."  (p. 58)

"Why are certain roles (bosses and workers, teachers and pupils, experts and ignoramuses, staff and patients, police and criminals, etc.) so often collusively required to be absolute?"  (p. 62)

"How does it come about that one party is content to notice its differences from the other but uneasy at recognising the similarities?"  (p. 62)

Is this "‘Nobel-Prize thinking’" meant to please or to disarm the consultant?  (p. 71)

"Envy is a disease of poverty...."  (p. 77)

"Everybody collusively seeks similarity to others and all are regarded as having identical needs and rights."  (p. 78)

The "general fear of enviable distinction may lead to the election of harmless nonentities to important posts."  (p. 78)

"Others will blur or renounce their roles, authority and responsibilities, and (emphasize)...their powerlessness and goodwill in attempts to escape from envious attack."  (pp. 78-79)

"‘I’m feeling left-out of this, and fed up.  And I notice I’m ashamed I didn’t know about last night and I’m ashamed to say I’m curious.  It sounds good--what went on?’"  (p. 83)

Observe that "statements about ‘people’ usually hide thoughts about one person...."  (p. 84)

"Could it be spoken about?"  (p. 85)

Main  (1983)

"A clear known structure and appropriate roles with inescapable responsibilities is needed for efficiently operating any task....Efficiency requires clear unshakeable roles for all."  (p. 216)

Main  (1965)

Humankind’s "mental life is so largely shaped by pain...."  (p. 9)

Malan, Balfour, Hood, & Shorter  (1976)

This "intellectual atmosphere (is)...a defense against more intimate discussion...."  (p. 1304)

Mann, Gibbard, & Hartman  (1967)

"On the one hand, (the group members)...find the hero’s interpretive thrusts quite exciting, but they fear that in the end they will be ‘exposed,’ ‘ripped apart,’ or similarly ravaged, destroyed, and then cast aside."  (p. 207)

The suggestion is that "rebellion (is)...the only effective way of dealing with authority."  (p. 211)

Is the group’s definition of work "shrewd, silent observation?"  (p. 226)

The group’s "fear of being abandoned by the (consultant is)...so intense that independence (is)...simply inconceivable."  (p. 235)

Maré  (1975)

The "problem...for the large group...is primarily how to think."  (p. 152)

Maybe "consciousness itself is a social phenomenon--‘Knowing things with other people’...."  (p. 154)

Maré  (1972)

"It is possible that all relationship and participation may be conceived as dangerous, since the closer and more direct relationships become, the more liable is aggression, eroticism, or emotion to be aroused, and the basic problem in human terms has always been how to relate to One, without either annihilating one, or creating chaos for the other."  (pp. 76-77)

"When it comes to discovering anything new, there are still no rules other than that of using one’s own powers of creative thinking."  (pp. 77-78)

"Experience by itself is silent; it requires hypotheses to give it a voice."  (p. 78)

Such forces are "intangibles which, like electricity, can only be demonstrated by their effects."  (p. 80)

I recall that "the word ‘orgy’ originally meant sacrifice."  What god is the group trying to appease or influence?  (p. 88)

"‘Truth exists only as the individual himself produces it in action.’"  (p. 120)

The "act of perceiving a number of people as one constitutes the beginning of a group...."  (p. 124)

Experience is more to be treasured, savored, and utilized because "no experience can be repeated."  (p. 125)

Certainly "membership in a group affects perception."  (p. 185)

Mason  (1981)

"This process needs the love of truth and aesthetic intuition for its accomplishment."  (p. 15)

Meltzer  (1978)

The "moment of experience (needs)...to be guarded from ‘memory’ and ‘desire’ in order to be apprehended in its uniqueness."  (p. 5)

Few "‘things in history have aroused a group’s feelings more powerfully than controversy about the characteristics of the deity whose cult is at the time flourishing....’"  (p. 8)

Menzies  (1979)

"The dominant societal attitude is that everyone should have what help they need or even want."  (p. 199)

Menzies  (1975-1976)

The group behaves "almost as though (the conference) society’s resources are unlimited."  (p. 6)

Miller  (1985a)

The "boundary of the enterprise is best conceived not as a line but as a region."  (p. 248)

"Survival is...contingent on an appropriate degree of insulation and permeability in the boundary region."  (p. 248)

Miller  (1985b)

Each group member "exports chaos from inside and imports order from outside."  (p. 385)

"Significant changes within a system cannot be sustained unless consistent changes occur in the relatedness of the system to its environment."  (p. 392)


Mills  (1975)

Two "steps in managing intergroup relations are distinguished: preparations and direct contacts."  (p. 42)

A group "must first determine what its own objectives are before it can respond in a coherent way to a challenge by another (group)...."  (p. 43)

"It is often difficult for people who have certain objectives to think not about the objectives themselves but how to attain them."  (p. 43)

"Offer a problem, not a solution."  (p. 44)

Modell  (1976)

This group seems to specialize in cocoon or womb fantasies, "a state where one is cut off from interaction from the environment."  (p. 295)


Money-Kyrle  (1950)

The "future safety of the human race depends upon its ability to find the right object to attack."  (pp. 322-323)

"A group like an individual may be either pathological or sane."  (p. 329)

Musto & Astrachan  (1975)

The group members seem to feel that the advantage to "having the cover of a more specific task or organization (is)...to obscure (their)...interaction."  (p. 237)

"‘It does seem the group has a hard time beginning.’"  (p. 241)

Perhaps there is significance in the group’s manner of avoiding examining its relation to the consultant.

The group members are "less interested in working to find out how the group (functions)...than in having a consultant who (will)...give interpretations to them."  (p. 243)

These pleas seem "to be an attempt to force the consultant into the position of ‘political leader,’ someone who might take action to forestall the group’s destructive behavior."  (p. 243)

"The group consensus uncomfortably (stifles)...individuality, and a primitive political structure (evolves)..., apparently to restrain the dominant members of the group."  (p. 244)

"The group (ends)...as if it were continuing."  (p. 246)

Newman  (1974)

Anxiety "may hamper the learning process: It may confuse perception, it may curtail ability to differentiate, and it may block recall--all three essential to learning."  (p. 23)

"To be new and alone in a group, with neither cues as to the kind of leadership he will have to live under nor knowledge of which aspect is a lure to danger and which a gate to pleasure, is an experience a person has uncountable times in his life...."  (p. 27)

"For leadership can be a burden, not only because of the responsibility and the extra work demanded of the leader, but also because it carries with it the penalty of being adored, envied and hated, often simultaneously."  (p. 33)

The "headache known to the wearers of crowns has found no aspirin, buffered or straight."  (p. 33)

In the fore is the "everyday paradox of group life--the fact that to act on what one says is such a rare phenomenon in our society that when one does so consistently in a group people become confused and disbelieving...."  (p. 35)

"To function properly, a group requires a bit of everything. What does not work is a homogeneity of personality, where either everybody or nobody wants to lead."  (p. 49)

To "abdicate decision-making results in a return to a more infantile mode--a dependency stage of followership appropriate and necessary for an infant, but not for an adulate least not most of the time."  (p. 68)

"Each role has a bit of everyone contained in it."  (p. 71)

It "may be the group that is expressing some need by creating a problem...."  (p. 75)

The "definition of (the)...task...often takes as much time as getting the task done, or more."  (p. 81)

"The concept...that a group is thoroughly dependent for its destiny on its leader is a myth--a beautiful self-whitewashing myth...."  (p. 88)

"Our internalized groups demand a kind of loyalty without thought....The group-in-one’s-head determines what one’s particular stance will be."  (p. 91)

"How am I to be I and us at the same time?  This is the most sophisticated problem of human social life, as any aware married couple can testify."  (p. 95)

"The Fairness Syndrome, while pretending to be ‘democratic,’ in fact neglects individual differences, condescends to the un-needy in certain areas, and fails to care adequately for the needy."  (p. 105)

"Trust...is a basic element in group survival.  But too much trust is as dangerous as too little."  (p. 138)

Time "is a remarkably elastic commodity, responsive to motivations and priorities."  (p. 175)

"To be one of anything in a group--black, white, yellow, red, male, female--is tremendously difficult."  (p. 196)

The "recognition of covert processes is a sine qua non of insight."  (p. 218)

An example: "a man is not afraid and runs because he sees a bear, but instead, runs from the bear, and then since he is running away, feels afraid."  (p. 264)

"For the group, the bystander performs the role of the outsider which is present in part in all of (you)...the part that wishes to be outside, in bed--anywhere but where it is in the here-and-now.  The role has to do with being special and relates to fence-straddling as well."  (p. 273)

The "basic conservativeness inherent in all human groups...that of seeking to ‘save’ or maintain things as they are...is a dynamic which operates in human beings to defend their own present, to deny their death."  (p. 280)

O’Connor  (1971)

This pairing "occurs at a point when the group members are totally disillusioned with themselves and with their leader.  The hope for the future is a defense against the experience of despair in the present."  (p. 109)

O’Day  (1976)

Indeed "there is no necessary relationship between how people think they behave and how they actually do behave...."  (p. 392)

Others, "by permitting someone else to become leader or chairman, were employing a passive strategy that would hold their anxiety in check."  (p. 403)

"Withdrawal is an obvious form of passive hostility through which the members can express their resentment toward the (consultant)...without risking the possible wrathful consequences of a more direct confrontation."  (p. 403)

"Member withdrawal can also represent a strategy by which the members force the (consultant)...to take control of the proceedings."  (p. 404)

The "amount of hostility the members feel toward the (consultant)...is a direct function of the degree of frustration they experience in trying to get the (consultant)...to take control and direct the group’s proceedings...."  (p. 406)

Unexpressed feelings about the consultant are preventing the members’ "meeting each other as peers instead of as competing subordinates."  (p. 408)

Void "the greatest taboo of all--collective rebellion against authority."  (p. 409)

Palmer  (1978)

The "group is making me into an angry, reprimanding person, so that they can preserve the idea of a friendly, welcoming group which it is good to come back to."  (p. 86)

"At this moment care (is)...understood in simple terms as an immediate response to an expressed need...."  (p. 94)

Palmer  (1979)

Perhaps it is worthwhile "to take note of (one’s)...fantasies and impulses, and indeed the totality of (one’s)...world-view, without being impelled to act upon them or defend them...."  (p. 179)

The conference provides multiple opportunities "for learning about social behaviour, and about one’s own strategies for dealing with other people."  (p. 182)

We "have an immediate awareness of being involved in a social system which we suppress and discount, either habitually or selectively, when we do not like what we are aware of.  If we can dwell upon this awareness, we have a clue to the way we have already construed the social situation we are in."  (pp. 188-189)

"As Orpheus discovered...we may succeed in descending into the underworld and returning to the light, without necessarily bringing with us the loved object we went to find."  (p. 189)

"‘Real education must ultimately be limited to men who insist on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.’"  (p. 191)

Palmer  (1985)

"In the conference, the power of the staff is largely illusory, projected upon them by the members."  (p. 280)

"‘You are right in supposing that I have more experience of these groups than most or all of you have.  I see myself as responsible for working with you towards ways of understanding what is going on: so use me in that capacity as much as you wish.’"  (p. 286)

"‘A master is someone who started before you did....’"  (p. 291)

Palmer  (1973)

It may be "‘useful to spell this out as a problem, rather than experience it as a series of sensations.’"  (p. 131)

Palmer  (1979)

"The performance of any task entails tolerance of the anxiety, concern, guilt or disappointment which accompanies making decisions on incomplete information and awaiting the outcome; or seeing plans which seemed good in conception only partially realised; or making changes; or making mistakes; or making choices which benefit some and harm others; or taking action which arouses antagonism in others; or terminating projects and organisations which have completed their task or been unable to do so."  (p. 46)

"Indeed, for some people, attending a conference is probably as important for learning about learning, as for learning about groups."  (p. 48)

We "are continually endeavouring to discover and understand what we are already doing."  (p. 55)

The "role of a member of a (study group)...involves contributing, selectively, information about his current feelings, fantasies and perceptions."  (p. 56)


Redl  (1942)

"The unification on the basis of common aggression against an outside enemy, does not seem to bind much longer than the open outside aggression lasts."  (p. 585)

Redlich & Astrachan  (1969)

Not to mention "the irrational assumption of the existence of one’s own experience in others."  (p. 1506)

Rice  (1958)

The group’s behavior suggests some feeling of "guilt involved in the mutual investment in inefficiency."  (p. 36)

Rice  (1965)

An "individual who can define some positive goal can exercise powerful leadership."  (p. 14)

"Two heroes die hard in our culture: the gifted amateur and the born leader."  (p. 24)

This conference review has a secondary task: "to provide an opportunity to learn about ending."  (p. 37)

After "all, the attempt to destroy authority and to make leadership impotent is one of the aspects of relationships between leaders and followers that the conference is called upon to study."  (p. 48)

"Learning is its own reward; lack of learning its own punishment."  (p. 67)

My true feeling?  "Bewildered."  (p. 86)

Rice  (1969)

"Every transaction requires the exercise of authority and calls into question the value of and sanction for that authority."  (p. 580)

Riger & Galligan  (1980)

Perhaps "causal explanations for behavior can focus on either the person or the situation."  (p. 902)

Ringwald  (1974)

Even though "people could be hurt by questioning which threatened them, an exaggerated concern with hurting people might immobilize the group."  (p. 227).

"In the process of idealizing the (consultant)..., members projected their own sense of competence onto the (consultant)..., and this resulted in an exaggerated estimate of the discrepancy between the (consultant’s)...competence and their own."  (p. 232)

The group embraces a "fantasy that contradictory wishes can be gratified simultaneously."  (p. 243)

Rioch  (1970)

The "group needs someone who will wring the (consultant’s)...heart or else show him up to be an unfeeling demon."  (p. 59)

"Resentment at being in a dependent state is present as well as a desire to persist in it."  (p. 60)

Rioch  (1975)

The "wish...for a leader is so strong that it is almost always possible for one of the sheep to play the role of the shepherd of the flock."  (p. 159)

"When, like sheep, we have gone astray, we may in our urgent need for a shepherd, follow the wrong one."  (p. 161)

"The power and strength of the leader are based on the weakness and helplessness of the follower."  (p. 161)

The assumption by the group "is that if something happens, someone must have planned it--if not for a good reason, then for a bad one."  (p. 168)

"The...conclusion seems inescapable, that responsibility within a system, if it is anywhere, is everywhere."  (p. 171)

The "dictator’s acts were made possible only by the apathy of the group, which (has)...happily let him do all the work until it turned out that they were going to have to pay a price for their inaction."  (p. 173)

Rosen  (1953)

"In no healthy (group)...is love the only feeling."  (p. 11)

Sampson  (1976)

The group may be able to "exert little or no control over (its)...unconscious mental life...."  (p. 255)

The group seeks "to avoid unpleasure by resisting the analysis of (its)...unconscious motives."  (p. 256)

On the other hand, it may be that the group’s "most powerful unconscious motivation is to solve (its)...problems."  (p. 257)

Schaar  (1969)

"Perhaps it really is possible to say something about the truth without first polling a sample of one’s contemporaries in order to get the facts."  (p. 280)

Schachtel  (1949)

"Bodily movement is the basic and simplest form of all activity endangering memory.  Action itself, the attitude of activity, even the activity of enjoying the immediate present are...the antagonists, the incompatible alternative of memory."  (p. 5)

A human being "perceives and remembers not as a camera reproduces on the film the objects before its lens; the scope and quality of his perceptions and experiences as well as of their reproduction by memory are determined by his individual needs, fears, and interests."  (p. 8)

Here is language "in its articulating and its obscuring function...."  (p. 20)

"The infant, long before he knows and remembers how his mother looks, knows how she smells and tastes."  (p. 25)

Schafer  (1970)

"What are the costs and dangers of gratification; the consequences of error and protest; the prospects for success and failure, reward and punishment, pleasure and pain...?"  (p. 19)

Schaffer & Galinsky  (1974)

Observe that "the topic of conversation has been entirely about outside affairs and...no one has said anything about the situation immediately confronting him."  (p. 168)

"‘I have no special magic to wield; what I do have is the power of observation and the ability to use it in an attempt to understand what’s going on; I invite you to use your capacities for observation and for rational analysis in a similar way.’"  (p. 169)

In all this experience, one "is not so much learning universal laws of group behavior directly applicable to his back home work group as he is getting a feel for some of the enormously subtle and complex processes that can occur in groups."  (p. 170)

What "the pairing culture strives for is group-life as it is commonly imagined to exist in Heaven."  (p. 182)

Does no one challenge "the group’s magical conviction that fighting, or pairing, or escaping into trivia will somehow extricate it from the morass of frustration and despair into which it is sinking"?  (p. 183)

There seems to be an uneasy or embarrassing "discrepancy between (the group’s)...fantasies about authority and the reality of authority...."  (p. 185)

Semrad, Kanter, Shapiro, & Arsenian  (1963)

"Are not (my) interventions often asking, in effect, ‘What is the nature of the game we as a group are playing?’"  (p. 472)

Shapiro  (1987)

Here, "the basic referent for interpretation is the task."  (p. 4)

Shapiro & Zinner  (1979)

"You’re all very careful with each other."  (p. 164)

Sherwood  (1964)

It is remarkable that "acceptance can be silent but rejection and disagreement must be voiced."  (p. 125)

Singer, Astrachan, Gould, & Klein  (1975)

"The capacity of powerful emotional dynamics to render even the most intelligent group members unable to read, assimilate, and believe what is clearly presented in a prospectus or brochure is sometimes staggering."  (p. 154)

Skynner  (1975)

"‘That space (namely, the center seats in the large group event) is like God--everything is there, yet nothing is there!’"  (p. 230)

Slater  (1966)

The group tends to "desire to have meaning and significance somehow emerge spontaneously and effortlessly from the proceedings without any activity, initiative, or interpretation on the part of (its)...members."  (p. 15)

Sarcasm is the "traditional measuring rod of the gap between fantasy and reality."  (p. 18)

How "subtle the group (has)...become, in the absence of  ‘orders,’ at trying to discern any ‘underlying hints’ of what the (consultant)...might want them to do."  (p. 30)

This "transformation of abandonment into expulsion...has a vindictive quality...."  (p. 40)

Perhaps "the inability of the members to deal with their anger at the (consultant)...until it is clear that their feelings are shared" could be discussed.  (p. 44)

Am I alone aware of the "close association between changing seats and attacking the...(consultant)"?  (p. 50)

"‘Confronted with a person who is not under (the group’s)...control and persists in upsetting the proceedings,’ the group members can either try to make the (consultant)...one of them or get rid of him altogether."  (p. 56)

"‘Yearning for a benediction from some source, the group dies.’"  (p. 74)

These "silent members remain a constant reminder that (you)...may be betting on the wrong horse."  (p. 80)

The "greatest preoccupation with sexuality coincides with the heaviest concentration of hostility toward the (consultant)...."  (p. 129)

"One might indeed wonder if the dependent stance is not a way of warding off group self-awareness and its attendant anxieties."  (p. 135)

Surely, "no member who is inactive is ever in serious contention for a leadership position."  (p. 143)

Initially, "in the history of individual, of species, of group, or of any relationship, all is fantasy.  Development is simply a matter of rescuing more and more pieces of reality, like bits of dry land emerging from the sea."  (p. 144)

"In the last analysis, independence cannot be conferred; it can only be seized."  (p. 150)

Beware.  For "equal treatment always leads to a coalition against whoever dispenses it."  (p. 156)

Slater  (1969)

Some "anxiety is resolved...through a successful effort to convert females in the group from sisterly competitors to motherly rewarders."  (p. 729)

"Rest is indissolubly linked with defeat."  (p. 732)

"To paraphrase Hamlet, the group would rather discuss those ills they now have, (than)...run the risk of revealing others they know not of."  (p. 736)

Slater & Bennis  (1964)

"Democracy is a superior technique for making more available the uncommitted."  (p. 57)

Stock & Lieberman  (1962)

Generally, there seems to be "greater agreement about affect than about the object of affect."  (p. 321)

Taylor, Bogdanoff, Brown, Hillman, Kurash, Spain, Thacher, & Weinstein  (1979)

It "is indeed convenient that the other sex is usually available as a repository for one’s disowned parts."  (p. 132)

Turquet  (1974)

"Gods can be public but not private."  (p. 362)


Turquet  (1975)

"‘The large group is not for the sick, the troubled, or the faint-hearted.’"  (p. 125)

"To talk loudly would be to lower the threshold for violence and so almost to provoke it.  The motto is that of: ‘Let sleeping dogs lie.’"  (p. 125)

Watson  (1969)

"The closer any reform comes to touching some of the taboos or rituals in the community, the more likely it is to be resisted."  (p. 495)

Worden  (1972)

Perhaps "progress has been retarded less by the difficulty of the questions faced than by man’s incredible need to think that he knows, and therefore to accept almost any answer, however simplistic, superstitious, or irrelevant, in preference to living with a feeling of ignorance."  (p. 38)

Unfortunately, "invalid questions are more often answered than recognized, and thereby encouraged rather than discouraged."  (p. 39)

"‘Whereof one cannot speak, thereof must one be silent.’"  (p. 51)

Wyatt  (1953)

These are "fundamental vicissitudes of man: dependence and mastery, growth and distortion, peril and relief, integrity and death."  (p. 291)
 
 


The complete bibliographical entries for most sources included in this compilation

are given in the references to its companion volume: Study group consultancy: Elements of the task


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